Dani Ceballos has had a difficult five-year stint at Real Madrid. Signed as one of the most promising young midfielders in 2017, the Real Betis academy graduate never really got going at the Santiago Bernabeu.
After struggling for game-time in his first two seasons at the club, Ceballos moved to England, joining Arsenal on loan. The 25-year-old spent two years at the Emirates Stadium but did not have the best of times there either, despite showing some glimpses of his potential.
Back at Real Madrid at the end of the season, Ceballos was linked with an exit last summer. But an injury at the Olympics meant that there was no transfer away and he was sidelined for the entirety of the first half of the season.
The ex-Real Betis star returned to action in January but was hardly used by Carlo Ancelotti on a regular basis. But, when given his first starting opportunity against Osasuna on Wednesday, Ceballos made the most of his chance.
The Spaniard put in a starring display in midfield alongside Eduardo Camavinga as Real Madrid secured a vital victory to inch closer to the La Liga crown.
Speaking after the game, Ancelotti was full of praise for his midfielder, saying: “He played a very good game, he may well have been the best in the team. He has a lot of quality.
“He has suffered a lot. He has had a season with a lot of problems at the start. In the Olympic Games, he had a slow recovery. The Ceballos everyone knows played.”
Now, a report from MARCA (h/t Madrid Xtra) claims that the game against Osasuna was not the only instance that Ceballos has impressed Ancelotti.
It is claimed that the 25-year-old has been constantly making a positive impression on the manager through his work ethic and dedication during the day-to-day training. The report states that not only Ancelotti but the rest of the Real Madrid squad has been impressed by him.
Ceballos is reportedly the first to arrive for training and the last to leave. He has knuckled down and worked hard in training despite being sparsely used by the manager, all of which has created an air of positivity around him.
Wednesday’s performance against Osasuna showed that Ceballos can still have a key role to play for Madrid in the future, considering that he is just 25 years old. However, whether Los Blancos decide to keep hold of him or cash in on him in the summer remains to be seen.
Real Madrid forward set for talks with Arsenal this week – report
With less than six months left on his contract, Marco Asensio looks to be on his way out of Real Madrid very soon. The Spaniard has not yet started talks to extend his contract with the Spanish giants, which has garnered the eyes from several top clubs across Europe.
One of the clubs interested in his signature happens to be Premier League leaders Arsenal. Mikel Arteta is said to be a fan of the player, and will try to be bring him to North London on a free transfer this summer.
According to Mirror, Asensio’s agents will fly to London this week to get an a better understanding Arsenal’s interest in the player. Talks are scheduled with Arsenal, among possibly other clubs.
Asensio’s priority remains to extend with Arsenal, but not at ‘any cost’. The winger is looking for raise with his new contract to go along with a four-year deal. The report states that he currently earns around €130,000 per week at Madrid.
The 27-year-old has been waiting for an official offer from Los Blancos for a while, but the club will wait for March or April before taking a decision on his extension.
Asensio took a while to grow important for Carlo Ancelotti this season, but has been featuring regularly on the right-wing lately. He even scored in 2-0 win against Valencia in midweek, taking his tally to two for the season, excluding three assists as well.
Arsenal are definitely looking to add more firepower to their squad for next season, having already brought in Leandro Trossard in the winter. Asensio could serve as the perfect backup to Bukayo Saka, who has been in incredible form all season.